Ask the Vet: An embarrassing little problem
PUBLISHED: 10:55 23 February 2016 | UPDATED: 10:55 23 February 2016
Boris the spaniel has put his troubles behind him, thanks to Christchurch Veterinary Referrals
Boris Mitchell, a delightful Cavalier King Charles spaniel, loves his care-free life on his owners’ farm in Ashbocking. However, some time ago Boris had developed a rather embarrassing and uncomfortable problem.
He had always been a dog that had unfortunately required manual expression of his anal sacs, even from an early age. Anal sacs are located at the entrance to the anus in dogs and they accumulate a pungent secretion that is released as a type of territorial marker (to other dogs). Suffice to say, they are entirely surplus to requirements in domesticated dogs.
In the case of Boris, the blocking of his anal sacs had become progressively more frequent and uncomfortable. Manual expression at the vets’ had become a miserable and painful experience. This was made worse by an infection of the anal sacs, a condition called anal sacculitis, that failed to resolve with routine antibiotics over several weeks.
It was at this point that a decision was made to surgically remove Boris’ anal sacs to spare him further misery. The surgical removal of the anal sacs is a very delicate and technically demanding procedure. This is because the sacs lie within the anal sphincter. However, in the right hands, the risk associated with this surgery is very small. Boris therefore had his anal sacs successfully removed at Christchurch Veterinary Referrals without incident.
Boris hasn’t looked back since his surgery. His owners Heather and James are over the moon with how much happier Boris is now, without the constant misery of his impacted anal sacs. Heather reports: “Boris is a much loved pet, a typical Cavalier who loves cuddles and is very much part of the family, so when he became ill it was very distressing for us all. It first manifested itself by rubbing his bottom along the floor. He seemed in constant discomfort, his hair on his rump started to fall out and he couldn’t jump up without yelping, so the change was truly miraculous after the operation. We had our old dog back – he was running and jumping and back to normal within a week.”